Published on Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Bargain shoppers hit the luxe lane

Luxury travel isn’t just for the elite few anymore, as top-drawer properties draw the style-conscious with inviting discounts on accommodations and services. Determined to get the most bang for her buck, the frivolous "fashionista" is changing her ways amidst the troubled times. Emerge the "recessionista" who values the dollar while remaining chic, stylish, and upbeat even when stocks are down.

So, where can a recessionista head these days for a stylish getaway at an inviting price? Uncover the best value in travel with the following deals in the most desirable addresses for budget-conscious and free-spending travelers alike.
Boston’s best-kept-yet-brand-new secret, the 16-suite Inn @ St. Botolph, draws with affordable luxury, including interiors by designer Celeste Cooper, easy proximity to Boston’s most desirable attractions, and the pleasure of knowing you won’t be nickled and dimed by pesky services. The Inn’s new 401k Package assures a blissful start to each day with a morning paper with the financial section removed, a bonus $50 Simons gift card offers retail therapy at nearby Copley Mall, home of Burberry, Gucci, Coach among other chic lines. End the day tucked in 600-thread-count Italian linen sheets with the satisfying sense of money well spent. From $401 plus tax for a 3-night stay – that’s a 35 percent savings! Available Sunday-Thursday, through March 31, 2009.

Nothing takes the chill off winter like healthy discounts on spa treatments. The White Barn Inn & Spa in Kennebunkport, Maine eases recessionistas into the New Year with the Sunday Spa Day Package – including 20% off on ALL spa treatments taken after 12:00pm, one night in a deluxe room, a continental breakfast and afternoon tea; four-course dinner pour deux at the White Barn Inn Restaurant; only if every day was Sunday at The White Barn Inn! From $225 per person/double; available Sundays from January 1 – March 30, 2009.
Seek solace beneath the Caribbean sun with the 3-4-5 Escape from The Regent Palms. The getaway from the award-winning resort on Grace Bay Beach offers additional nights for precious travel bucks: Stay 3 nights and receive a 4th night free; stay 4 nights and receive a 5th night free; or stay 5 nights and receive a 6th night free. If all that weren’t enough, book a treatment at The Regent Spa –– and enjoy a second treatment for 50% off. Taken together, that’s savings of up to 25%. Available through April 14, 2009; rates starting at $625 per night.
Talk about low Tides. Each of the three of Tides properties – including The Tides South Beach, The Tides Riviera Maya and The Tides Zihuatanejo – is offering substantial discounts on stylish luxury for early-booking guests. So put down the latest issue of W and dial up the Très Tides package – and the sooner the better: Make reservations 30 days early for a 10% savings, 60 days ahead for 15%, and 90 days prior to arrival for a whopping 30%.
Rates at Tides Riviera Maya start at $585/night ( Rates at Tides Zihuatanejo start at $330/night ( Rates at Tides South Beach start at $595 weekday and $695 weekend ( Valid through 2009.  
Don’t sweat the financial crisis – Breathe Easy at Viceroy Palm Springs. Book a weekday (Sunday-Thursday) stay and get 25% off just about everything at the stylish desert resort – including accommodations, meals, beverages, treatments at the Estrella Spa, and even the resort fee. Recessionistas can also count on complimentary resort wellness programs, fitness center, townie bicycles, newspapers and Wi-Fi Internet access – and so can everybody else! Rates start at $199 per night and is valid through 2009; package excludes minibar, taxes and gratuities.
Even in the midst of a downspin, the nation’s premier shopping experience is looking up thanks to the Stay for Four, Pay for Three package from The Regent Bal Harbour. Located just minutes from the renowned Bal Harbour Shops, the hotel is offering 4-nights accommodations for the price of 3. Even if there’s no room in your budget for A-list design houses like Dior, and Chanel there are plenty of ways to indulge your savings onsite at The Regent Bal Harbour, including gourmet dining at 1 Bleu helmed by celebrated Chef Mark Militello, or a luscious treatment at the first Guerlain Spa in North America. Valid through April 8, 2009; daily rates start at $525.

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